"To a certain extent, said Isaacs, "Uganda is like that. AIDS has been so prevalent in Uganda; they have been living with a killer. Now they are seeing effective results of their efforts to stem this tide, and I think they are to be congratulated for it."

 

According to a Samaritan's Purse spokesperson, First Lady Museveni challenged the audience to resist complacency and indifference in the fight against HIV/AIDS in their countries: "We may look at our present efforts exclusively in terms of the HIV/AIDS pandemic, but God is doing a more permanent and lasting work in us as the Church. He is preparing us and building in us a culture of caring and oneness, which will stand us in good stead in the hard times ahead for the whole world. The Church must not be caught sleeping. Indifference would be unforgivable at such a time as this; for this is the time we must stand and be counted regarding what we believe and what we are willing to do for what we believe."

 

Franklin Graham said in a welcome letter to conference delegates, "The shining example of Uganda is a tribute to church leadership and influence that has not only transformed thousands of lives but has gained the attention of the world."

 

Graham added, "The world's finest doctors, richest donors, and strongest governments cannot match the worldwide Church in terms of earthly care and eternal hope. Our response to HIV/AIDS will be a defining moment in the history of the Church."

 

Uganda was the first in a series of regional Prescription for Hope conferences organized by Samaritan's Purse to strengthen the Christian response to HIV/AIDS. In the coming months, similar meetings are planned in Latin America and West Africa.

 

Prescription for Hope began last year with an unprecedented global conference in Washington, D.C., and now encompasses dozens of HIV/AIDS ministries supported by Samaritan's Purse.

 

Through leadership and partnership, Samaritan's Purse seeks to strengthen the international Christian response to the HIV/AIDS pandemic; mobilize private, church, corporate, and government resources; and develop a unified plan to defeat the deadly disease through Christ-like compassion, action, and hope.

 

Other Articles in This Series:

Could AIDS Pandemic be 'Golden Opportunity' for Church?

Part Two: Christians Respond to AIDS Pandemic
Gazing into the Human Face of AIDS
Christians Wrestle with a Biblical Response to AIDS

Responding to AIDS: A Look at Cultural Practices in Africa